Football crazy fans of Kolkata have once again lived up to their reputation as tickets of FIFA U- 17 World Cup matches, to be held at the Salt Lake stadium here, were "sold out" in less than 12 hours. In the first phase after its launch, the venue package tickets for Kolkata were kept at throwaway prices of Rs 480, 960 and 1920 for the 10 matches including the summit clash on October 28. It was a limited inventory that was open for sale and the Local Organising Committee (LOC) would put up more on sale in phase one in case it gets sold out, FIFA U-17 World Cup tournament director Javier Ceppi had said. Spanish World Cup winner Carles Puyol kickstarted the ticket sales yesterday as it went live on FIFA website at 1911 hours, in a tribute to Mohun Bagan icons who in the same year had become the first Indian team to defeat an English side (East Yorkshire Regiment) in their IFA Shield triumph. But in 12 hours all the tickets were marked "sold out" in red in the FIFA website, even as tickets were "available" across the remaining five venues. According to Ceppi, tickets were launched at 60 per cent discount in limited inventory to assess the football passion across the six World Cup venues. "It's a competition.
I've been told that the Bengalis like football very much, it should reflect on the ticket sales," Ceppi had said while making the announcement on May 14. The venue package sales at 60 per cent discount is till the draw on July 7 after which individual match tickets will be available till Phase 4. Individual match tickets will be available till July 21 at a 50 per cent discount for visa cardholders only in Phase 2. Phase 3 will start from July 21 to October 5 at 25 per cent discount, while Phase 4 will begin from October 6 till the final at full price. Home to Group F teams, the Salt Lake stadium will also host one round 16 game, one quarterfinal, the third place playoff and the final.
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